Friday 01 Mar 2024
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KUALA LUMPUR: Public Gold Marketing Sdn Bhd has been removed from Bank Negara Malaysia’s (BNM) Financial Consumer Alert (FCA) list on Monday, after the central bank made a thorough assessment of the company and verified that it has a genuine business model.

In a statement yesterday announcing its removal from the BNM FCA list, Public Gold said it has been trading physical gold and silver bars solely for wealth preservation purposes.

“At Public Gold, we practise a transparent business model whereby we solely buy and sell physical gold and silver bars without deceiving our customers with unrealistic offers. We trade physical gold and silver bars based on 24-hour live international gold trading prices at a reasonable margin spread. Our customers’ interest is always our number one priority,” said the company’s founder and executive chairman Datuk Louis Ng in a note yesterday.

Earlier this month, the office of Genneva Malaysia Sdn Bhd, which is on BNM’s FCA list, was raided by the central bank and other law enforcement agencies.

Genneva Malaysia, which claims to have over 50,000 clients and revenues of RM3 billion annually, has a business model that mirrors the syariah principle of Al-Bai (sale and purchase). Customers buy gold for a contracted period and are given hibah, or a payment of 2% or 3% per month on the price they paid for the gold as a discount or gift. Returns of 24% to 36% per year could be achieved.

Other companies recently raided and under investigation by the authorities are Caesar Gold Sdn Bhd, Pageantry Gold Bhd and Worldwide Far East Bhd. These companies, along with Genneva Malaysia, are currently listed on the Financial Fraud Alert website.

BNM has a total of 84 companies on its FCA list, with about 20 in gold investment operations.  

In a statement yesterday, BNM said the de-listing of Public Gold from FCA “is not an endorsement or authorisation by Bank Negara Malaysia on the companies’ business activities”.  

“Bank Negara Malaysia will continue to monitor entities to ensure no illegal activities are conducted. Bank Negara Malaysia would not hesitate to take appropriate actions if entities contravene any laws administered by Bank Negara Malaysia,” it said.


This story/article first appeared (or appeared) in The Edge Financial Daily, October 31, 2012.

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